Some years ago I desperately wanted a job that I undermined my qualification and was ready to do anything. There was this opening at a bank and I thought I could apply but as a mass communication graduate I wasn’t sure what my function will be at a bank. I applied anyway and was invited for a written test and interview.
I was glad when I was announced to have passed the written test and was to prepare for the oral test. As part of my preparation I inquired from existing staff how things had been with them. One staff told me she was sure I will get the job since I performed well in the written test. I also had an impressive curriculum vitae. I wanted to know before hand what the oral question would be like. She just said, “nothing serious, just regular random questions.” This was perfectly fine by me since I was not even familiar with most banking terms.
“Who are you?” The interviewer asked looking straight into my eyes. I wondered “what a question?” She has my CV in front of her and still doesn’t know who I am?
“I am Emike. I am a graduate of…” She didn’t seem interested anymore.
“Tell me about yourself.” I thought that was what I was doing before you interrupted, I almost said
“I am smart, creative…” I lost words and enthusiasm to continue. I knew my chances of getting the job had automatically reduced. The question caught me off guard. Simple yet I couldn’t confidently answer.
I left still hopeful that I would get the job.
A week later when I didn’t get any response from them I called just to ask if I had been ‘miraculously’ considered. “Sorry you were not picked.” A female voice said to me on the receiver.
“Do you by chance know why…”
“Our interviewer was not impressed with your oral test”
I knew it!
I felt really very disappointed but more disappointing was the fact that I couldn’t say WHO I am. Or maybe I didn’t even know!
Weeks a later, another firm called me for an interview. It was an opening for an editor! I wanted it more than anything else.
As I sat in front of the chairman the memory of the bank interview raced back that I didn’t even hear what he said before I started speaking.
“I am passionate about writing and I have eyes for good publication. I have experience in nearly all genre of writing. I have read your company’s profile and I am the one you need to give this organization the change you desire.”
He rolled in laughter and said, “I asked where have you previously worked and you gave me your history! Impressive. Can you resume on Monday?”
Till date I will never forget that one experience at the bank. I understood who I am is not just about my name and what school I attended but what positive difference will my contribution make. Unfortunately though some people don’t know WHO they are.
No one will be interested in whatever qualification you have until you are positively influencing lives
Again I ask, who are you?
Picture Source: blackenterprise.com